African American Art, 1985-2015

Title Details

Pages: 248

Illustrations: 45 color images

Trim size: 8.000in x 9.250in



Pub Date: 03/01/2023

ISBN: 9-780-8203-6047-8

List Price: $39.95

Subsidies and Partnerships

Published with the generous support of Sarah Mills Hodge Fund


African American Art, 1985-2015

The first illustrated survey of significant contemporary African American art

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  • Description
  • Reviews

Battleground is the first illustrated history of contemporary African American art. The volume offers an in-depth examination of twenty-five Black artists, discussing their artworks, practices, and philosophies, as expressed in their own words. Celeste-Marie Bernier has done extensive archival work in sources that have not been studied before, and her research provides a foundation for an intellectual and cultural history of contemporary African American artists and art movements from 1990 to the present. The wealth of quoted material—published interviews, artist statements, and autobiographical essays—should inform and inspire additional research in the years to come.

Battleground examines the paintings, drawings, sculptures, and installation, digital, and performance art produced by twenty-five Black artists living and working in the United States over the last three decades. The artists studied in this book include Emma Amos, Radcliffe Bailey, Mary Lee Bendolph, Chakaia Booker, Beverly Buchanan, Willie Cole, Leonardo Drew, Meta Vaux Warrick Fuller, Myra Greene, Lyle Ashton Harris, Ronald Lockett, Whitfield Lovell, Kerry James Marshall, Lorraine O’Grady, Jefferson Pinder, Debra Priestly, Winfred Rembert, Nellie Mae Rowe, Alison Saar, Dread Scott, Clarissa T. Sligh, LaShawnda Crowe Storm, Mickalene Thomas, Nari Ward, and Pat Ward Williams.

Battleground feels like a gift. The book’s central questions are ripe for this moment and Celeste-Marie Bernier does an extraordinary job of telling the story of Black art and Black life as interwoven parts of the broader struggle for liberation.

—Cassandra Jackson, author of Violence, Visual Culture, and the Black Male Body

At every turn, Bernier provides absorbing narratives. . . . Battleground presents itself as a remarkable blueprint for scholars of all backgrounds in regard to the task of forever treating the people within their subject matter with dignity, respect, and sensitive consideration.

—Eddie Chambers, author of World is Africa: Writings on Diaspora Art

About the Author/Editor

CELESTE-MARIE BERNIER is a professor of United States and Atlantic studies at the University of Edinburgh. Among her works are more than twenty published and forthcoming single and coauthored books, essay collections, and scholarly editions, including African American Visual Arts; Stick to the Skin; Suffering and Sunset; Characters of Blood; Visualising Slavery; Inside the Invisible; Pictures and Power; If I Survive; The Anna Murray and Fredrick Douglass Family Papers; and Douglass Family Lives. She lives in Edinburgh, Scotland.